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Here’s how Elizabeth Warren’s student loan debt forgiveness plan would work

Here’s how Elizabeth Warren’s student loan debt forgiveness plan would work
[Photo: Flickr user Lorie Shaull]

That sound you just heard was all of the predatory education loan lenders shuddering at the prospect of an Elizabeth Warren presidency. The U.S. senator from Massachusetts, who is seeking the Democratic presidential nomination, announced her exhaustive plan to help reduce the crippling and ever-mounting student loan debt crisis.

Currently, Americans owe over $1.4 trillion in student loan debt, and it’s only going to get worse as time goes on. In a Medium post, Warren wrote that the U.S. “got into this crisis because state governments and the federal government decided that instead of treating higher education like our public school system — free and accessible to all Americans — they’d rather cut taxes for billionaires and giant corporations and offload the cost of higher education onto students and their families.” And today she explained how she would try and dig millions of citizens out of this financial morass.

Her proposed policy would cancel up t0 $50,000 of student debt for individual Americans. Here’s how it would work:

  • The plan would cancel $50,000 of student loan debt for people whose household income is less than $100,000.
  • For those who make more than $100,000, the amount of debt cancellation would go down by $1 for every $3 more the household makes; “for example, a person with household income of $130,000 gets $40,000 in cancellation, while a person with household income of $160,000 gets $30,000 in cancellation.”
  • People who make over $250,000 would not be eligible.

Warren wrote that this would include private student loan debt, too, but didn’t go into specifics. (For reference, data from 2017 said Americans amassed a total of $64.2 billion in outstanding private student loan debt.)

The senator’s plan is certainly a sweeping one, and will likely make many banks hate her even more (an antipathy that tech companies probably feel as well). But it does provide a clear way to help Americans out of this crisis. In her Medium post, Warren said that once this debt relief is put into place she would focus on creating pathways for people to seek out higher education without amassing thousands of dollars of debt.

Can you even imagine an America that isn’t predicated on citizens financially burdening the rest of their lives to do normal things like go to college?

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